first-past-the-post
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In a first-past-the-post
electoral system An electoral system or voting system is a set of rules that determine how elections and Referendum, referendums are conducted and how their results are determined. Political electoral systems are organized by governments, while non-political ele ...
(FPTP or FPP; sometimes formally called single-member plurality voting or SMP; sometimes called choose-one voting for single-member districts, in contrast to
ranked-choice voting Instant-runoff voting (IRV), also sometimes referred to as the alternative vote (AV), preferential voting, or, in the United States, ranked-choice voting (RCV), though these names are also used for other systems, is a type of ranked preferential ...
), voters cast their vote for a candidate of their choice, and the candidate who receives the most votes wins (even if the top candidate gets less than 50%, which can happen when there are more than two popular candidates). FPTP is a
plurality voting Plurality voting is an electoral system An electoral system or voting system is a set of rules that determine how elections and referendums are conducted and how their results are determined. Political electoral systems are organized by gover ...
method, and is primarily used in systems that use single-member electoral divisions. FPTP is used as the primary form of allocating seats for legislative elections in about a third of the world's countries, mostly in the
English-speaking world Speakers of English English usually refers to: * English language English is a West Germanic languages, West Germanic language first spoken in History of Anglo-Saxon England, early medieval England, which has eventually become the Wo ...
. The phrase is a metaphor from British
horse racing Horse racing is an equestrian The word equestrian is a reference to Equestrianism, horseback riding, derived from Latin ' and ', "horse". Horseback riding (or Riding in British English) Notable examples of this are: *List of equestrian spor ...

horse racing
, where there is a post at the finish line (though there is no specific percentage "finish line" required to win in this voting system, only being furthest ahead in the race). Many countries use FPTP alongside proportional representation in a non-compensatory
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
system. Others use it in compensatory mixed systems, such as part of
mixed-member proportional representation Mixed-member proportional representation (MMP or MMPR) is a mixed electoral system in which voters get two votes: one to decide the legislator, representative for their single-seat electoral district, constituency, and one for a political part ...
or
mixed single vote The mixed single vote (MSV) is a type of mixed-member electoral system An electoral system or voting system is a set of rules that determine how elections and referendums are conducted and how their results are determined. Political electoral ...
systems. In some countries that elect their legislatures by proportional representation, FPTP is used to elect their head of state. FPTP can be used for single-member electoral divisions; the candidate with the highest number (but not necessarily a majority) of votes is elected. The multiple-member version of plurality voting is when each voter casts (up to) the same number of votes as there are positions to be filled, and those elected are the highest-placed candidates; this system is called the
multiple non-transferable vote Multiple non-transferable vote (MNTV), also known as plurality-at-large voting or block vote, is a non- proportional voting system An electoral system or voting system is a set of rules that determine how elections and referendums are conducted ...
(MNTV) and is also known as block voting. When voters have only a single vote each, but there are multiple seats to be filled, that system is called the
single non-transferable vote#REDIRECT Single non-transferable vote {{Redirect category shell, 1= {{R from other capitalisation ...
(SNTV). The multiple-round election ( runoff voting) method most commonly uses the FPTP voting method in the second round. The first round, usually held according to SNTV rules, determines which candidates may progress to the second and final round.


Illustration

Under a first-past-the-post voting method, the highest-polling candidate is elected. In this real-life illustration from the 2011 Singaporean presidential election, presidential candidate
Tony Tan Tony Tan Keng Yam (born 7 February 1940) is a Singaporean politician who was the seventh President of Singapore, serving a six-year term from 1 September 2011 to 31 August 2017 after winning the 2011 Singaporean presidential election as a ca ...
obtained a greater number of votes than any of the other candidates. Therefore, he was declared the winner, although the second-placed candidate had an inferior margin of only 0.35% and a majority of voters (64.8%) did not vote for Tony Tan:


Effects

The effect of a system based on plurality voting spread over a number of separate districts is that the larger parties, and parties with more geographically concentrated support, gain a disproportionately large share of seats, while smaller parties with more evenly distributed support gain a disproportionately small share. It is more likely that a single party will hold a majority of legislative seats. In the United Kingdom, 19 of the 24 general elections since 1922 have produced a single-party majority government; for example, the 2005 general election results were as follows: In this example, Labour took a majority of the seats with only 36% of the vote. The largest ''two'' parties took 69% of the vote and 88% of the seats. In contrast, the Liberal Democrats took more than 20% of the vote but only about 10% of the seats. FPTP wastes fewer votes when it is used in two-party contests. Waste of votes and minority governments are more likely when large groups of voters vote for three, four or more parties as in Canadian elections. Canada uses FPTP and only two of the last six federal Canadian elections produced single-party majority governments.


Arguments in support

Supporters of FPTP argue that its concept is easy to understand, and ballots can more easily be counted and processed than those in
preferential voting Preferential voting or preference voting (PV) may refer to different Electoral system, election systems or groups of election systems: * Ranked voting methods, all election methods that involve ranking candidates in order of preference (United Sta ...
systems. FPTP often produces governments which have legislative voting majorities, thus providing such governments the legislative power necessary to implement their electoral
manifesto A manifesto is a published declaration of the intentions, motives, or views of the issuer, be it an individual, group, political party or government. A manifesto usually accepts a previously published opinion or public consensus or promotes a ...

manifesto
commitments during their term in office. This may be beneficial for the country in question in circumstances where the government's legislative agenda has broad public support, albeit potentially divided across party lines, or at least benefits society as a whole. However handing a legislative voting majority to a government which lacks popular support can be problematic where said government's policies favour only that fraction of the electorate that supported it, particularly if the electorate divides on tribal, religious, or urban–rural lines. Supporters of FPTP also argue that the use of
proportional representation#REDIRECT Proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical, and to ideolog ...

proportional representation
(PR) may enable smaller parties to become decisive in the country's
legislature A legislature is an assembly Assembly may refer to: Organisations and meetings * Deliberative assembly A deliberative assembly is a gathering of members (of any kind of collective) who use parliamentary procedure Parliamentary procedure i ...
and gain leverage they would not otherwise enjoy, although this can be somewhat mitigated by a large enough
electoral threshold The electoral threshold, or election threshold, is the minimum share of the primary vote which a candidate or political party requires to achieve before they become entitled to any representation in a legislature. This limit can operate in variou ...
. They argue that FPTP generally reduces this possibility, except where parties have a strong regional basis. A journalist at ''
Haaretz ''Haaretz'' ( , originally ''Ḥadshot Haaretz'' – , in English ''The Palestine News'') is an Israeli newspaper. It was founded in 1918, making it the longest running newspaper currently in print in Israel, and is now published in both He ...
'' noted that Israel's highly proportional
Knesset The Knesset ( he, הַכְּנֶסֶת ; "gathering" or "assembly") is the unicameral In government, unicameralism (Latin , "one" and , "chamber") is the practice of having a single legislative or legislative chamber, parliamentary chamber ...

Knesset
"affords great power to relatively small parties, forcing the government to give in to political blackmail and to reach compromises";
Tony Blair Anthony Charles Lynton Blair (born 6 May 1953) is a British politician who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1997 to 2007 and Leader of the Labour Party from 1994 to 2007. On his resignation he was appointed Special Envoy ...

Tony Blair
, defending FPTP, argued that other systems give small parties the balance of power, and influence disproportionate to their votes. Allowing people into parliament who did not finish first in their district was described by
David Cameron David William Donald Cameron (born 9 October 1966) is a British politician, businessman, lobbyist In politics, lobbying, persuasion, or interest representation is the act of lawfully attempting to influence the actions, policies, or d ...
as creating a "Parliament full of second-choices who no one really wanted but didn't really object to either."
Winston Churchill Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill, (30 November 187424 January 1965) was a British statesman who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom The prime minister of the United Kingdom is the head of government The head o ...

Winston Churchill
criticized the alternative vote system as "determined by the most worthless votes given for the most worthless candidates."


Arguments against


Unrepresentative

First past the post is most often criticized for its failure to reflect the popular vote in the number of parliamentary/legislative seats awarded to competing parties. Critics argue that a fundamental requirement of an election system is to accurately represent the views of voters, but FPTP often fails in this respect. It often creates "false majorities" by over-representing larger parties (giving a majority of the parliamentary/legislative seats to a party that did not receive a majority of the votes) while under-representing smaller ones. The diagram here, summarizing Canada's 2015 federal election, demonstrates how FPTP can misrepresent the popular vote.


Majority reversal

A majority reversal or election inversion is a situation where the party that gets an overall majority of votes loses the election or does not get a plurality of seats. Famous examples of the second placed party (in votes nationally) winning a majority of seats include the elections in Ghana in 2012, in New Zealand in 1978 and in 1981 and in the United Kingdom in 1951. Famous examples of the second placed party (in votes nationally) winning a plurality of seats include the election in Canada in 2019. Even when a party wins more than half the votes in an almost purely two-party-competition, it is possible for the runner-up to win a majority of seats. This happened in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines in
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, 1998 and
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and in Belize in
1993 1993 was designated as: * International Year for the World's Indigenous People The year 1993 in the Kwajalein Atoll Kwajalein Atoll (; Marshallese language, Marshallese: ) is part of the Marshall Islands, Republic of the Marshall Island ...
. This need not be a result of malapportionment. Even if all seats represent the same number of votes, the second placed party (in votes nationally) can win a majority of seats by efficient vote distribution. Winning seats narrowly and losing elsewhere by big margins is more efficient than winning seats by big margins and losing elsewhere narrowly. For a majority in seats, it is enough to win a plurality of votes in a majority of constituencies. Even with only two parties and equal constituencies, this means just over a quarter of the votes of the whole.


Geographical problems


Geographical favouritism

Generally FPTP favours parties who can concentrate their vote into certain voting districts (or in a wider sense in specific geographic areas). This is because in doing this they win many seats and don't 'waste' many votes in other areas. The British
Electoral Reform Society The Electoral Reform Society (ERS) is an Advocacy group, independent campaigning organisation based in the United Kingdom which promotes electoral reform. It seeks to replace the first-past-the-post voting system with one of proportional repres ...
(ERS) says that regional parties benefit from this system. "With a geographical base, parties that are small UK-wide can still do very well". On the other hand, minor parties that do not concentrate their vote usually end up getting a much lower proportion of seats than votes, as they lose most of the seats they contest and 'waste' most of their votes. The ERS also says that in FPTP elections using many separate districts "small parties without a geographical base find it hard to win seats".
Make Votes Matter Make Votes Matter is a political pressure group Advocacy groups, also known as special interest groups, use various forms of advocacy in order to influence public opinion and ultimately policy. They play an important role in the development o ...
said that in the 2017 UK general election, "the Green Party, Liberal Democrats and UKIP (minor, non-regional parties) received 11% of votes between them, yet they ''shared'' just 2% of seats", and in the 2015 UK general election, " e same three parties received almost a quarter of all the votes cast, yet these parties ''shared'' just 1.5% of seats." According to Make Votes Matter, and shown in the chart below, in the 2015 UK general election
UKIP The UK Independence Party (UKIP ) is a Eurosceptic, right-wing populist political party in the United Kingdom. The party reached its greatest level of success in the mid-2010s, when it gained two Member of Parliament (United Kingdom), members ...
came in third in terms of number of votes (3.9 million/12.6%), but gained only one seat in Parliament, resulting in one seat per 3.9 million votes. The Conservatives on the other hand received one seat per 34,000 votes.


Distorted geographical representation

The winner-takes-all nature of FPTP leads to distorted patterns of representation, since it exaggerates the correlation between party support and geography. For example, in the UK the
Conservative Party Conservative Party may refer to: Europe Current *Croatian Conservative Party, *Conservative Party (Czech Republic) *Conservative People's Party (Denmark) *Conservative Party of Georgia *Conservative Party (Norway) *Conservative Party (UK) Histor ...

Conservative Party
represents most of the rural seats in England, and most of the south of England, while the Labour Party represents most of the English cities and most of the north of England. This pattern hides the large number of votes for the non-dominant party. Parties can find themselves without elected politicians in significant parts of the country, heightening feelings of regionalism. Party supporters (who may nevertheless be a significant minority) in those sections of the country are unrepresented. In the 2019 Canadian election
Conservatives Conservatism is a political and social philosophy promoting traditional social institutions. The central tenets of conservatism may vary in relation to the traditional values or practices of the culture Culture () is an umbrella term w ...
won 98% of the seats in Alberta/Saskatchewan with only 68% of the vote. All but Conservatives are pretty much unrepresented; the general appearance is that all residents of those two provinces are Conservative, which is an exaggeration. Similarly, in Canada's 2021 elections, the Conservative Party won 88% of the seats in Alberta with only 55% of the vote, and won 100% of the seats in Saskatchewan with only 59% of the vote.


Tactical voting

To a greater extent than many others, the first-past-the-post method encourages "tactical voting". Voters have an incentive to vote for a candidate who they predict is more likely to win, as opposed to their preferred candidate who may be unlikely to win and for whom a vote could be considered as wasted. The position is sometimes summarised, in an extreme form, as "all votes for anyone other than the runner-up are votes for the winner." This is because votes for these other candidates deny potential support from the second-placed candidate, who might otherwise have won. Following the extremely close 2000 U.S. presidential election, some supporters of
Democratic Democrat, Democrats, or Democratic may refer to: *A proponent of democracy Democracy ( gr, δημοκρατία, ''dēmokratiā'', from ''dēmos'' 'people' and ''kratos'' 'rule') is a form of government in which people, the people have the a ...
candidate
Al Gore Albert Arnold Gore Jr. (born March 31, 1948) is an American politician and who served as the 45th from 1993 to 2001. Gore was 's running mate in their and the pair were re-elected in 1996. Near the end of Clinton's second term, Gore was s ...

Al Gore
believed one reason he lost to
Republican Republican can refer to: Political ideology * An advocate of a republic, a type of government that is not a monarchy or dictatorship, and is usually associated with the rule of law. ** Republicanism, the ideology in support of republics or against ...
George W. Bush George Walker Bush (born July 6, 1946) is an American politician and businessman who served as the 43rd president of the United States The president of the United States (POTUS) is the head of state and head of government of the Unit ...

George W. Bush
is that a portion of the electorate (2.7%) voted for
Ralph Nader Ralph Nader (; born February 27, 1934) is an American political activist, author, lecturer, and attorney. He is noted for his involvement in consumer protection, environmentalism, and government reform causes. The son of Lebanese immigrants to ...
of the
Green Party A Green party is a formally organized political party A political party is an organization that coordinates candidates to compete in a country's elections. It is common for the members of a political party to have similar ideas about poli ...
, and exit polls indicated that more of them would have preferred Gore (45%) to Bush (27%). This election was ultimately determined by the results from Florida, where Bush prevailed over Gore by a margin of only 537 votes (0.009%), which was far exceeded by the 97488 (1.635%) votes cast for Nader in that state. In
Puerto Rico Puerto Rico (; abbreviated PR; tnq, Boriken, ''Borinquen''), officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico ( es, link=yes, Estado Libre Asociado de Puerto Rico, lit=Free Associated State of Puerto Rico) is a Caribbean The Caribbean (, ; es, ...

Puerto Rico
, there has been a tendency for Independentista voters to support
Populares The Populares (; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. Through the power of the Rom ...
candidates. This phenomenon is responsible for some Popular victories, even though the Estadistas have the most voters on the island, and is so widely recognised that Puerto Ricans sometimes call the Independentistas who vote for the Populares "melons", because that fruit is green on the outside but red on the inside (in reference to the party colors). Because voters have to predict who the top two candidates will be, results can be significantly distorted: * Some voters will vote based on their view of how others will vote as well, changing their originally intended vote; * Substantial power is given to the media, because some voters will believe its assertions as to who the leading contenders are likely to be. Even voters who distrust the media will know that others ''do'' believe the media, and therefore those candidates who receive the most media attention will probably be the most popular; * A new candidate with no track record, who might otherwise be supported by the majority of voters, may be considered unlikely to be one of the top two, and thus lose votes to tactical voting; * The method may promote votes ''against'' as opposed to votes ''for''. For example, in the UK (and only in the Great Britain region), entire campaigns have been organised with the aim of voting ''against'' the
Conservative Party Conservative Party may refer to: Europe Current *Croatian Conservative Party, *Conservative Party (Czech Republic) *Conservative People's Party (Denmark) *Conservative Party of Georgia *Conservative Party (Norway) *Conservative Party (UK) Histor ...

Conservative Party
by voting Labour Party (UK), Labour, Liberal Democrats (UK), Liberal Democrat in England and Wales, and since 2015 the Scottish National Party, SNP in Scotland, depending on which is seen as best placed to win in each locality. Such behaviour is difficult to measure objectively. Proponents of other voting methods in single-member districts argue that these would reduce the need for tactical voting and reduce the spoiler effect. Examples include preferential voting systems, such as Instant-runoff voting, instant runoff voting, as well as the two-round system of runoffs and less tested methods such as approval voting and Condorcet methods.


Effect on political parties

Duverger's law is an idea in political science which says that constituencies that use first-past-the-post methods will lead to two-party systems, given enough time. Economist Jeffrey Sachs explains: However, most countries with first-past-the-post elections have multiparty legislatures (albeit with two parties larger than the others), the United States being the major exception. There is a counter-argument to Duverger's Law, that while on the national level a plurality system may encourage two parties, in the individual constituencies supermajorities will lead to the vote fracturing. It has been suggested that the distortions in geographical representation provide incentives for parties to ignore the interests of areas in which they are too weak to stand much chance of gaining representation, leading to governments that do not govern in the national interest. Further, during election campaigns the campaigning activity of parties tends to focus on marginal seats where there is a prospect of a change in representation, leaving safer areas excluded from participation in an active campaign. Political parties operate by targeting districts, directing their activists and policy proposals toward those areas considered to be marginal, where each additional vote has more value.


Wasted votes

Wasted votes are seen as those cast for losing candidates, and for winning candidates in excess of the number required for victory. For example, in the 2005 United Kingdom general election, UK general election of 2005, 52% of votes were cast for losing candidates and 18% were excess votes—a total of 70% "wasted" votes. On this basis a large majority of votes may play no part in determining the outcome. This winner-takes-all system may be one of the reasons why "voter participation tends to be lower in countries with FPTP than elsewhere."


Gerrymandering

Because FPTP permits many wasted votes, an election under FPTP is more easily gerrymandered. Through gerrymandering, electoral areas are designed deliberately to unfairly increase the number of seats won by one party by redrawing the map such that one party has a small number of districts in which it has an overwhelming majority of votes (whether due to policy, demographics which tend to favour one party, or other reasons), and many districts where it is at a smaller disadvantage.


Manipulation charges

The presence of spoiler (politician), spoilers often gives rise to suspicions that strategic nomination, manipulation of the slate has taken place. A spoiler may have received incentives to run. A spoiler may also drop out at the last moment, inducing charges that dropping out had been intended from the beginning.


Smaller parties may reduce the success of the largest similar party

Under first-past-the-post, a small party may draw votes and seats away from a larger party that it is ''more'' similar to, and therefore give an advantage to one it is ''less'' similar to. For example, in the 2000 United States presidential election, the left-leaning
Ralph Nader Ralph Nader (; born February 27, 1934) is an American political activist, author, lecturer, and attorney. He is noted for his involvement in consumer protection, environmentalism, and government reform causes. The son of Lebanese immigrants to ...
drew more votes from the left-leaning
Al Gore Albert Arnold Gore Jr. (born March 31, 1948) is an American politician and who served as the 45th from 1993 to 2001. Gore was 's running mate in their and the pair were re-elected in 1996. Near the end of Clinton's second term, Gore was s ...

Al Gore
than his opponent, leading to Ralph Nader 2000 presidential campaign#The "spoiler" controversy, accusations that Nader was a "spoiler" for the Democrats.


Safe seats

First-past-the-post within geographical areas tends to deliver (particularly to larger parties) a significant number of safe seats, where a representative is sheltered from any but the most dramatic change in voting behaviour. In the UK, the Electoral Reform Society estimates that more than half the seats can be considered as safe. It has been claimed that members involved in the 2009 United Kingdom parliamentary expenses scandal, expenses scandal were significantly more likely to hold a safe seat. However, other voting systems, notably the Party-list proportional representation, party-list system, can also create politicians who are relatively immune from electoral pressure.


May abet extreme politics

The Constitution Society published a report in April 2019 stating that, "[in certain circumstances] FPTP can ... abet extreme politics, since should a radical faction gain control of one of the major political parties, FPTP works to preserve that party's position. ...This is because the psychological effect of the plurality system disincentivises a major party's supporters from voting for a minor party in protest at its policies, since to do so would likely only help the major party's main rival. Rather than curtailing extreme voices, FPTP today empowers the (relatively) extreme voices of the Labour and Conservative party memberships." Electoral reform campaigners have argued that the use of FPTP in South Africa was a contributory factor in the country adopting the apartheid system after the 1948 South African general election#Results, 1948 general election in that country.


Suppression of political diversity

According to the political pressure group
Make Votes Matter Make Votes Matter is a political pressure group Advocacy groups, also known as special interest groups, use various forms of advocacy in order to influence public opinion and ultimately policy. They play an important role in the development o ...
, FPTP creates a powerful electoral incentive for large parties to all target similar segments of voters with similar policies. The effect of this reduces political diversity in a country because the larger parties are incentivised to coalesce around similar policies. The ACE Electoral Knowledge Network describes India's use of FPTP as a "legacy of British colonialism".


Likelihood of involvement in war

Leblang and Chan found that a country's electoral system is the most important predictor of a country's involvement in war, according to three different measures: (1) when a country was the first to enter a war; (2) when it joined a multinational coalition in an ongoing war; and (3) how long it stayed in a war after becoming a party to it. When the people are fairly represented in parliament, more of those groups who may object to any potential war have access to the political power necessary to prevent it. In a proportional democracy, war and other major decisions generally requires the consent of the majority. The British human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, and others, have argued that Britain entered the Iraq War primarily because of the political effects of FPTP and that proportional representation would have prevented Britain's involvement in the war.


Campaigns to replace FPTP

Many countries which use FPTP have active campaigns to switch to proportional representation (e.g. UK and Canada). Most modern democracies use forms of
proportional representation#REDIRECT Proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical, and to ideolog ...

proportional representation
(PR). In the case of the UK, the campaign to scrap FPTP has been ongoing since at least the 1970s. However, in both these countries, reform campaigners face the obstacle of large incumbent parties who control the legislature and who are incentivised to resist any attempts to replace the FPTP system that elected them on a minority vote.


Voting method criteria

Scholars rate voting methods using mathematically derived voting method criterion, voting method criteria, which describe desirable features of a method. No ranked preference method can meet all the criteria, because some of them are mutually exclusive, as shown by results such as Arrow's impossibility theorem and the Gibbard–Satterthwaite theorem.


Majority criterion

The majority criterion states that "if one candidate is preferred by a majority (more than 50%) of voters, then that candidate must win". First-past-the-post meets this criterion (though not the converse: a candidate does not need 50% of the votes in order to win). Although the criterion is met for each constituency vote, it is not met when adding up the total votes for a winning party in a parliament.


Mutual majority criterion

The mutual majority criterion states that "if a majority (more than 50%) of voters top-rank some k candidates, then one of those k candidates must win". First-past-the-post does not meet this criterion.


Condorcet winner criterion

The Condorcet criterion, Condorcet winner criterion states that "if a candidate would win a Condorcet method, head-to-head competition against every other candidate, then that candidate must win the overall election". First-past-the-post does notFelsenthal, Dan S. (2010
Review of paradoxes afflicting various voting procedures where one out of m candidates (m ≥ 2) must be elected
In: Assessing Alternative Voting Procedures, London School of Economics and Political Science, London, UK.
meet this criterion.


Condorcet loser criterion

The Condorcet loser criterion, Condorcet loser criterion states that "if a candidate would lose a Condorcet method, head-to-head competition against every other candidate, then that candidate must not win the overall election". First-past-the-post does not meet this criterion.


Independence of irrelevant alternatives criterion

The independence of irrelevant alternatives criterion states that "the election outcome remains the same even if a candidate who cannot win decides to run." First-past-the-post does not meet this criterion.


Independence of clones criterion

The independence of clones criterion states that "the election outcome remains the same even if an identical candidate who is equally-preferred decides to run." First-past-the-post does not meet this criterion.


List of current FPTP countries

The following is a list of countries currently following the first-past-the-post voting system for their national legislatures. *Antigua and Barbuda *Azerbaijan *Bahamas *Barbados *Bangladesh *Belarus *Belize *Bermuda (United Kingdom) *Bhutan *Botswana *Brazil (Brazilian Senate, Federal Senate) *Canada (House of Commons (Canada), House of Commons) *Cayman Islands (United Kingdom) *Cote d'Ivoire *Cook Islands (New Zealand) *Dominica *Eritrea *Eswatini *Ethiopia *The Gambia *Ghana *Grenada *India (only used in Lok Sabha, lower house) *Iran (only used in single-member electoral districts for Assembly of Experts, Khobregan) *Jamaica *Kenya *Kuwait *Liberia *Marshall Islands *Maldives *Malawi *Malaysia *Mauritius *Micronesia *Myanmar *Nigeria *Niue (New Zealand) *Oman *Pakistan *Palau *Poland (Senate of Poland, Senate) *Saint Kitts and Nevis *Saint Lucia *Saint Vincent and the Grenadines *Samoa *Seychelles *Singapore (for single-member constituencies (SMCs), but the vast majority of MPs are elected through Multiple non-transferable vote, block voting) *Sierra Leone *Solomon Islands *South Korea (253 out of 300 seats) *Taiwan (73 out of 113 seats) *Tonga *Trinidad and Tobago *Tuvalu *Uganda *United Kingdom *Elections in the United States, United States (see footnote) *Virgin Islands (United Kingdom and United States) *Yemen *Zambia Footnote: Prior to the 2020 United States election, 2020 election, the US states of Alaska and Maine completely abandoned FPTP in favor of Instant-runoff voting, ranked-choice voting or RCV. In the US, 48 of the 50 U.S. state, states and the Washington, D.C., District of Columbia use FPTP to choose the electors of the Electoral College (United States), Electoral College (which in turn elects the president); Maine and Nebraska use a variation where the electoral vote of each congressional district is awarded by FPTP, and the statewide winner is awarded an additional two electoral votes. In states that employ FPTP, the presidential candidate gaining the greatest number of votes wins all the state's available electors (seats), regardless of the number or share of votes won, or the difference separating the leading candidate and the first runner-up.


List of former FPTP countries

* Argentina (The Argentine Chamber of Deputies, Chamber of Deputies uses Party-list proportional representation, party list PR. Only twice used FPTP, first between 1902 and 1905 used only in the 1904 Argentine presidential election, elections of 1904, and the second time between 1951 and 1957 used only in the 1951 Argentine general election, elections of 1951 and 1954 Argentine legislative election, 1954.) * Australia (replaced by Instant-runoff voting, IRV in 1918, and for the Australian Senate with Single transferable vote, STV in 1948) * Belgium (adopted in 1831, replaced by Party-list proportional representation, party list PR in 1899)— the Member of the European Parliament for the German-speaking electoral college is still elected by FPTP * Cyprus (replaced by
proportional representation#REDIRECT Proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical, and to ideolog ...

proportional representation
in 1981) * Denmark (replaced by
proportional representation#REDIRECT Proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical, and to ideolog ...

proportional representation
in 1920) * Hong Kong (adopted in 1995, replaced by Party-list proportional representation, party list PR in 1998) * Japan (replaced by
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
in 1993 Japanese general election, 1993) * Lebanon (replaced by
proportional representation#REDIRECT Proportional representation Proportional representation (PR) characterizes electoral systems in which divisions in an electorate are reflected proportionately in the elected body. The concept applies mainly to geographical, and to ideolog ...

proportional representation
in June 2017) * Lesotho (replaced by Mixed-member proportional representation, MMP Party-list proportional representation, Party list in 2002) * Malta (replaced by Single transferable vote, STV in 1921) * Mexico (replaced by
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
in 1977) * Nepal (replaced by
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
) * Netherlands (replaced by Party-list proportional representation, party list PR in 1917) * New Zealand (replaced by Mixed-member proportional representation, MMP in 1996) * Papua New Guinea (replaced by Instant-runoff voting, IRV in 2002) *Philippines (replaced by
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
in 1998 for House of Representatives elections, and by
multiple non-transferable vote Multiple non-transferable vote (MNTV), also known as plurality-at-large voting or block vote, is a non- proportional voting system An electoral system or voting system is a set of rules that determine how elections and referendums are conducted ...
in 1941 for Senate elections) * Portugal (replaced by Party-list proportional representation, party list PR) *South Africa (replaced by Party-list proportional representation, party list PR in 1996) * Tanzania (replaced by
parallel voting Parallel voting describes a mixed electoral system where voters in effect participate in two separate elections for a single chamber using different systems, and where the results in one election have little or no impact on the results of the oth ...
in 1995)


See also

* Cube rule * Deviation from proportionality * Plurality-at-large voting * Approval voting * Single non-transferable vote * Single transferable vote


References


External links


A handbook of Electoral System Design
fro
International IDEA

ACE Project: What is the electoral system for Chamber1 of the national legislature?


detailed explanation of first-past-the-post voting
ACE Project: Electing a President using FPTP

ACE Project: FPTP on a grand scale in India

The Citizens' Assembly on Electoral Reform says the new proportional electoral system it proposes for British Columbia will improve the practice of democracy in the province.

Vote No to Proportional Representation BC


* [http://www.game-point.net/misc/election2005/ The Problem With First-Past-The-Post Electing (data from UK general election 2005)] *
The fatal flaws of First-past-the-post electoral systems
{{DEFAULTSORT:First-Past-The-Post Single-winner electoral systems